Oral arg. -COA – March 3, 2016


At 1:30 the COA will hear Karen Chance Richards v. Rickey Chance. It involves a property settlement agreement and whether a party may wait ten years to enforce the terms thereof.

The Chance’s were divorced and entered into a property settlement agreement.  As part of the agreement Karen was to to pay one-half of the ad valorem taxes and insurance premiums on the parties’  Ocean Springs property.  When Karen could not pay it, Rickey made the full payments from March of 2003 until September 5, 2013.  According to Karen, the parties occasionally discussed the fact that, at some point, Mrs. Richards needed to begin paying her half.  On September 5, 2013, Rickey made a written  request for repayment.  On October 23, 2013, he filed a motion for contempt.  Karen made a payment  for the insurance premium and ad valorem taxes for the year 2013. The court found Karen “in contempt of court, although not wilful contempt, and awarded attorney’s fees to [Rickey].   The judgment was for $34,122.55 judgment  for ad valorem taxes and insurance premiums, and an award of attorney’s fees in the amount of $1,720.00.

Karen appealed. She argues that Rickey was barred by  the doctrines of laches and equitable estopple from seeking repayment.

Karen Richards’ brief

Rickey Chance’s brief

Karen Richards’ reply

Watch the argument here



One thought on “Oral arg. -COA – March 3, 2016

  1. So Karen loses, right? Laches and equitable estoppel translate, in my mind, as “I needed to do something to justify getting paid.”

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